nishijin weaving is the traditional style of weaving in kyoto, and the nishijin area is the part of the city that is home to the weaving and supporting industries. a visit to the nishijin textile center is a good introduction to the history.
nishijin textile center 西陣織工業組合
address: horikawa-imadegawa minami-iru kamigyo-ku, kyoto 京都市上京区堀川通今出川南入
map showing the nishijin textile center.
view of the building from the outside.
the nishijin weaving style originated about 500 years ago, when a group of weavers were introduced to silk weaving techniques from china, and lived in the western camp (nishijin) of a general at the time.the textile center is a large and has comprehensive displays, including looms.
mini dioramas of (i guess) traditional silk stores?in the end though, the nishijin textile center is a big souvenir emporium...it has a variety of mini cultural courses. i haven't tried any of their classes, but for anyone seriously interested in crafts, i recommend orinasu kan (following post) instead for a hands on workshop.